How To Bet On Cricket
Successful cricket betting requires discipline, sound money management coupled with the ability to consistently identify betting value.
Betting On Cricket: An Introduction
Due to ever increasing popularity on the Indian sub-continent, cricket is regarded as the second most popular sport in the world (behind association football) and as such gives the average punter 365 days a year in which he or she can can bet on cricket online.
Modern day cricket is unrecognisable from its humble beginnings in southern England back in the late 16th century. Sure, the game is still played with a bat, a ball, two sets of stumps and eleven players per side, but cricket as a sport is forever changing as each year passes.
Traditional red ball cricket played with players in white clothing on a quintessential long English summers afternoon seems a far cry away from the big, bash, bold nature of the ever popular Twenty20 (T20) smash-a-thon that is the Indian Premier League (IPL) with its bright flashing lights, a white ball, coloured clothing, cheerleaders and players being sold to franchises for millions of dollars a season.
1 - Betting On Cricket Online
2 - Cricket Betting Odds Explained
3 - Cricket Value Bets
4 - Cricket Betting Explained
5 - Best Cricket Betting Strategies
6 - Cricket Betting Spreadsheet
7 - Selecting A Bookmaker For Cricket Betting
8 - Cricket Free Bets & Bookmaker Offers
9 - Cricket Live Streaming
10 - Following Cricket Betting Tips
Up until the mid 1960s the game of professional cricket appeared fairly comfortable with itself. Matches were played over a number of days, with two innings per side. The winner was of course the side who made the most amount of runs over the combined innings. These type of matches, known as First-Class cricket matches (domestically) were played alongside Test matches (internationally) until the advent of limited overs cricket came into reckoning in 1963.
Limited overs cricket, better known as One Day cricket (or List A to give its official title) was developed through the 1960s in English domestic cricket. The first One Day International (ODI) wasn't played until 1971, when a washed out Test match between Australia and England led organisers to hastily arrange a one innings a side match to ensure spectators could watch some meaningful, competitive cricket. This wasn't ODI cricket as we know it today as players still wore white clothing and the game was played with a red ball. It was only in 1977 that crickets image as we know it today really discovered itself.
The face of cricket was again changed in 2003 when the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) launched their own domestic limited overs spin-off tournament known as Twenty20 (T20). Their aim was to ensure a full cricket match could be played and completed outside of office and school hours, with each innings of 20 overs lasting no longer than 90 minutes. The first T20 international was played in Auckland some two years later. New Zealand played host to Australia in a high scoring run-feast that was played in relaxed spirits – both sides wore retro kits and donned fake 1970s moustaches as a mark of respect to what Packer had introduced. T20 cricket was still at this stage still seen as a fit of fun.
What cricket tournaments can you bet on? First off we need to differentiate between domestic and international cricket. Let us start off focussing on the international side of the game. As explained above, there are three recognised formats of the game that are played out between Full and Associate member nations, governed by the International Cricket Council (ICC)
|Test Cricket||The oldest form of cricket, played over 5 days, with the potential for either team to win or for the match to finish in a draw.|
|One Day Cricket||Popularised in the 1970's this form of the game revolutionised cricket as we know it. A game played in one day, with 50 overs for each team.|
|T20 Cricket||Popularised in the 2000's this form of the game takes excitement to another level. A game played in one afternoon or evening with 20 overs for each team.|
Test matches are played over five days, giving us plenty of time to come up with a solid cricket betting strategy. Currently there are ten nations that have Test match status - England, Australia, South Africa, New Zealand, West Indies, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe. Tests are seen as the pinnacle of the game by many traditionalists.
Each Test match is played over fifteen sessions (morning, afternoon, evening session each day) with a total of 90 overs scheduled in each of the five days play. Because of the natural length of a Test match, players have to deal with a variety of different conditions. Batting could be very easy on the first day due to a flat wicket, but by days four and five the pitch could be scuffed up through natural wear and tear, offering spin bowlers in particular the chance to make life difficult for batsman with variable bounce and turn. Likewise cloudy, humid conditions in a morning session could make batting particularly tough, with the ball swinging and seaming around. If the batsman survives a tough spell such as this, he could be rewarded post-lunch in the afternoon session when the sun comes out. Clear overhead conditions, an older ball and a tiring attack could make batting several times easier than an hour or two previous.
In a shorter, one innings match such as an ODI or T20, these different conditions and scenarios are not given time to unfold, meaning Test match players have to be significantly more adaptable in order to succeed long term. Ever changing conditions mean cricket scores in Test matches can be vastly different from day-to-day, even session-to-session.
Test match series are generally nowadays no longer than three-match series, with the odd exception being a series involving one or more of the four main Test playing nations – England, Australia, South Africa and India.
Popular Test Rivalries
The eldest and most famous live cricket series is called The Ashes, played out between England and Australia. This is now a five match Test series hosted by each nation every four years (so a cycled series played every two years, home and away) Betting odds on Ashes cricket are extremely popular and undoubtedly takes the most amount of money for any Test match series played.
Other popular Test match series to bat on include the Basil D'Oliveira Trophy (played between England and South Africa) and the Border-Gavasker Trophy (played between Australia and India).
The ten nations that have full Test playing status are joined by a number of Associate nations that have full ODI and/or T20 status – Afghanistan, Hong Kong, Ireland, Papua New Guinea, Scotland, UAE, Oman, Netherlands.
Whereas ODI and T20 cricket are still treated as less important cousins to Test cricket by many in the UK, coloured clothing and white ball cricket is very much the preference amongst spectators, players and television broadcasters in Asia and the Middle-East.
Despite several attempts at tinkering from the ICC, ODIs have pretty much stayed the same since those Packer-inspired early days. Often played as day-nighters (first innings in late afternoon, second innings at night played under floodlights) each side bats for 50 overs with the winner naturally being the side that scores the most runs. The main difference in playing conditions from Test cricket is the mandatory fielding restrictions placed upon a captain/side depending on what stage the match is in. Currently a captain is only allowed to station two fielders (out of nine) outside the thirty yard circle during overs 1-10 giving batsmen license to find the boundary in these early overs. Overs 11-40 the captain can put a further two men outside the circle to protect the boundaries and finally in overs 41-50 this can go up to five men being allowed to field outside the circle.
ODI series between two sides tend to be played as three, four or five match series. Some nations take part in a Tri-series, where three teams play each other twice before a one off Final decides the winner.
There are two ODI global ICC tournaments, both played on a four year cycle. First of all there is the ICC Champions Trophy, secondly there is the ICC Cricket World Cup. Cricket betting tips for these two events are widely available online, as many punters love to bet on the Cricket World Cup in particular.
T20 cricket is growing at a rapid rate, with many international sides dropping a number of ODIs or even a Test match in order to schedule more of the games shortest format. Once television companies cottoned on that T20 could offer the quick-fix excitement that many 21st century sports fans and punters demand, it was only a matter of time before the volume of matches at the top level increased.
Like ODIs, captains have to deal with fielding restrictions in T20 cricket. The first 6 overs are set-up to allow batsmen to have the space and freedom to hit boundaries, with just 2 fielders allowed outside the 30 yard circle. The remaining 14 overs allow a little more breathing space for the fielding side, with 5 fielders allowed to patrol the fences.
Both limited overs formats are in the main aimed at allowing batsman to entertain the crowd with flat pitches, shorter boundaries and lots of runs often on offer. Different skills are required for players to succeed in the shorter formats that aren't otherwise required in Tests. With every passing year, cricketers that only excel in ODI or T20 cricket are not only gaining more respect with the cricket watching public, they are also becoming richer men with advent of multiple domestic T20 competitions round the world. Suddenly being able to hit a six off the first ball you face is considered just as skilful as being able to grind out a Test match fifty on a dodgy fifth day pitch.
Domestic cricket has never been in a better place for a cricketer to make a living. T20 cricket is responsible for this, with nearly all the major nations hosting their own annual tournament, meaning punters can not only bet on international tournaments or matches, they can also bet on cricket matches played domestically around the world. Many of the worlds best limited overs cricketers are now effectively freelancers for multiple T20 sides.
Away from T20 cricket, each country has its own First Class and List A tournament(s) that runs in parallel to an already packed international schedule. The County Championship four-day competition is forever popular amongst its loyal followers in the UK and the Sheffield Shield First Class competition provides a stern test for Australia's future Test match stars. Both of these tournaments are popular to bet on and you can access cricket odds live throughout these two domestic competitions with a number of leading bookmakers,. Given the history of contrived results in First-Class cricket (captains often agree to declare an innings in weather-affected domestic cricket to ensure a positive result) bookies will not offer odds for a draw in these, meaning draw-no-bet is a fantastic way to have a practically risk free cricket bet online.
First of all you should not have a set amount to bet on each match. Like any successful bettor, never exceed a maximum amount that you can afford to lose and never, ever chase loses. By not having a set amount you feel you must use per match, you will only bet on outcomes that you can.
What Do Cricket Betting Odds Mean?
What do cricket betting odds represent? Let's consider an example. India are playing England in a ODI. India are at odds of 1.67 to win the match. What does this mean? Well, betting odds represent a likelihood (often referred to as the ' implied probability' ) of an outcome occurring. So in our example, India are at odds of 1.67 to win the match. These odds reflect the bookmaker's assessment of India's chances of winning the match.
So what are the chances that India at odds of 1.67 will win this match? We can answer this with a simple formula:
Converting decimal odds to implied probability formula:
|Implied probability||=||1 / decimal odds|
So in our example, the chances of India winning the match at odds of 1.67 are:
|1 / 1.67||=||0.5988||=||59.88%|
If you want to be a successful sports bettor, then understanding the probability expressed in betting odds is crucial. To put it simply, you enhance your chances of being a profitable long term cricket bettor, if you understand the probabilities expressed in betting odds and know how to convert odds to their implied probability.
How Do Cricket Betting Odds Work?
So you've placed a bet on an upcoming cricket match. How much will you win if you place a bet on a team and they win the match? This is a very simple calculation:
|Your Profit||=||(Stake * Odds) - Stake|
So let’s consider our previous example and say that we have placed a £10 bet on India at odds of 1.67 to defeat England in an upcoming ODI match. How much profit will you make on your bet if India wins?
|Your Profit||=||(£10 * 1.67) - £10|
|Your Profit||=||(£16.70) - £10|
So in our example we would make a profit of £6.70 on our £10 bet if India beats England.
For more advice on betting odds, please read these articles:
The most important thing when it comes to profitable cricket betting, or any form of betting for that matter, is to only bet when you have identified betting value.
What Is A Value Bet?
But how do we calculate betting value? It’s a very simple calculation:
|Value||=||(Decimal Odds * Your Assessed Probability) - 1|
So let’s say we are betting on Australia to defeat South Africa in an upcoming Test match, with a bookmaker offering odds of 3.00 for Australia to win. We’ve done our research and believe that in our estimation there’s a 40% chance that Australia will win this Test match. Are the odds of 3.0 offering us any value here?
|Value||=||(3.0 * 0.40) - 1|
|Value||=||1.20 - 1|
Whenever the value is greater than 0, we have what is known as a 'value bet'. So given the odds of 3.00 and our assessed probability of 40%, there is 20% value in the odds on offer of 3.00 for Australia to win the Test match.
So why should we only bet when there is value? The key to successful cricket betting is in making more accurate assessments of a given outcome’s likelihood than those presented in bookmaker betting odds. If you do this consistently, you will be a long term profitable cricket bettor. In our example we assessed that Australia has a 40% chance of winning the Test against South Africa, while the bookmaker odds of 3.00 reflected a probability of 33.3%. This is an opportunity to place a value bet because we believe the chances of Australia winning the Test match are greater than the probability represented by the bookmaker’s odds.
For more information on betting value and cricket staking strategies, read the following articles.
There are a number of ways you can bet on cricket. Most bookmakers now offer a deep menu of cricket betting markets, giving you the opportunity to find a range of value betting angles to exploit, whether it be betting on test cricket, one day internationals or the increasingly popular T20 format. Here we explain the most popular cricket betting markets and how you can profit from them.
- Match Outcome/Series Winner
- Leading Runscorer/Wicket Taker
- Highest Opening Partnership
- Man Of The Match
- Number Of Boundaries
The most popular market to bet on a cricket match is of course the match outcome. In limited overs matches we have just two possible outcomes, that either side can win. In Test matches we have the third possible result which is of course the draw. Betting on a series outcome is a very similar to the above. We can bet on the likely winner, plus the overall exact series score.
When betting on Test matches always remind yourself that draws are becoming less and less likely due to ever increasing run-rates – only inclement weather or a very flat pitch tends to get in the way of a positive result nowadays.
Within both the match and series outcomes, bettors can also punt on leading run scorers and wicket takers in each innings and/or match. This can be a hugely profitable market as trends often appear, such as leading run scorers batting inside the top 3 positions of a batting line-up in limited overs cricket, as they get to face the most amount of balls and bat when opposition captains have to have the field up during a power-play.
Highest opening partnerships can be an interesting market to play for punters as well. Quite often a certain batsman struggles against a certain bowler (see Atherton example above) and as such some research into how individual batsman do against certain bowlers can yield decent returns.
Like in any sport, certain players have an x-factor which makes them prime candidates to put in a special, match winning performance. A batsman that is known to make quick fire hundreds or a bowler that has a tendency to deliver a spell in which he takes multiple wickets are prime candidates to pay out in the Man of the Match market.
Another growing market for punters is betting on the number of boundaries - be it total number of fours or sixes scored. This can be a team match up, where some sides will be packed full of players that have an ability to hit sixes with ease, yet other sides might contain batsmen that look to work the ball into gaps and hit fours. There are also some grounds that suit six hitting, be it due to small playing areas (think Christchurch, New Zealand) or matches played at high altitude where the ball flies further through the air (think Johannesburg, South Africa).
Key to finding value betting opportunities is developing a range of cricket betting strategies. There are a number of ways to analyse an upcoming cricket match, no matter what cricket format you are betting on. Here we discuss five keys to identifying cricket betting value.
No other sport in the world is affected by playing conditions more than cricket. Let us start with the the uncontrollable – the weather. Anyone who bets on cricket online knows that a look at the weather forecast over the duration of a cricket match is vital in order to gauge whether or not the rain gods are going to impact on how much play we have.
Naturally if we have lots of rain forecast for a Test match, the draw result becomes much more likely as less cricket is played. Over the course of a five day Test match we might expect some rain, but we need to research the venue and the location to find out how much play might be lost.
Also remember that in some countries the sun sets quicker and much earlier than in others, meaning any lost overs will struggle to be made up over the remaining days of a Test. A Test match that sees several hours lost to rain in say Sri Lanka will struggle to find enough daylight hours to make that time up than say England, where play can go on to as late as 8pm and still be playing in bright sunshine.
When reading up on your cricket bet tips remember to double check rainy seasons! Tests carried out in Asia, in particular Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are often squeezed in out of season, and monsoons can wipe out entire days play.
Finally don't be put off betting on the outcome of a match based upon some cloud cover and/or threat of rain. Often cloud cover assists swing and seam bowlers to such an extent that certain grounds become several times harder for batsman when the cloud rolls in. Finally, keep in mind that run-rates are forever increasing making draws much less common than they were previously.
Following on from the first cricket betting strategy, next we have to predict what the venue might serve up in regards pitch/wicket type. Along with conditions the weather, cricket betting odds and the match type itself are often dictated to based upon what surface the players are given by the groundsman.
Whilst no two pitches are the exactly the same year-on-year, certain wickets tend to play the same due to the soil or grass type, making it hard for a groundsman to change the type of pitch offered up even if he wanted to. This means certain grounds, such as say Cape Town or Adelaide can be traditionally quite slow in nature, making batting reasonably easy throughout the duration of a Test match. Other grounds assist the faster bowlers, naturally offering steep bounce and pace because the pitch is so hard – think the WACA in Perth.
Other grounds naturally assist swing bowlers. No matter what the pitch is doing, certain venues seem to allow the bowler to swing the ball through the air, often the biggest nemesis for any batsman. Trent Bridge in Nottingham or the Basin Reserve in Wellington spring to mind here. Then of course we have venues whose pitches tend to help the spin bowlers turn the ball from day one. This is usually due to a dry surface being prepared, often because the weather has been hot and dry in the build up to the match. Here we are thinking of Galle in Sri Lanka or Chittagong in Bangladesh.
Finally be wary of those uber flat pitches that make for a batting paradise and with it a boring drawn Test match with no opportunity for either side to win. SSC in Sri Lanka and the Sheik Zayed in Abu Dhabi provide two wickets that often play this way. In limited overs matches it is also important to study the history of a venue to see what type of match we might have. If we have rain forecast then overs will be lost, often making it a lot easier for the side batting second, chasing a reduced target with less overs to be bowled out. Like the pitches that are served up in Tests, we need to spend time reading the best cricket tipsters online who could help us spot a trend, such as is a certain ground traditionally a high scoring venue, or a lower one?
The flip of a coin can have a huge impact on the overall result of a Test, ODI or T20 match. In Tests you could get to bat on a brand new pitch, offering nothing in the way of movement for the seam bowlers or turn for the spinners. By batting first and setting up a big score, you can effectively take out the chance for the opposition to win and dictate the course of the rest of the game, often bowling last on a pitch that has natural deterioration and offers your bowling attack much needed assistance.
On the other side of the coin, there is a saying which goes along the lines of 'That was a good toss to lose' – this usually comes when a captain is unsure of how a pitch will play, be it due to a covering of live green grass or overhead cloud cover which he fears could make batting tough.
Here are the very basic points captains (and punters) will look for when reading a pitch & conditions:
1 - If the pitch looks green it will likely assist the seam bowlers and make batting hard work. Bowl first.
2 - If the pitch looks bare and yellow or white in colour then he should expect easy batting conditions. Bat first.
3 – If the pitch is already cracked, batting is likely to be difficult as the game goes on as these cracks will open up, offering variability in bounce and vast assistance to all bowlers. Bat first.
4 - A check upstairs. Is it cloudy and does the ground traditionally offer help to swing bowlers? Bowl first.
In limited overs cricket the toss can also play a huge part. For instance some grounds are notoriously tricky to bat second on, especially when the floodlights come on. Bowlers can suddenly get the new white ball to start swinging everywhere, when in the first innings of the match played in late afternoon sunshine, conditions were much easier for batting as the ball didn’t move at all. Durban in South Africa is one such venue.
The other side of the coin here is certain grounds are much harder to protect a score, rather than defend. This is usually down to a smaller than average playing area, meaning batsmen chasing a big score can still find the boundary with ease, and as such keep the required ran-rate down to a level that doesn't spiral out of control.
Our main cricket betting tip is generally to wait for the toss to take place when placing any outright match winning bet on a live cricket match. We can control a lot of things, the flip of a coin we cannot.
When betting on cricket, like any sport, ensure you do your research into how both a team and individuals are performing. Does a certain type of player love batting on a certain ground, yet can't buy a run at another? Will a certain bowler shine, not just because the form he is in, but also because the opposition will likely struggle to play his type of bowling?
Team form is also vital when betting on cricket online. If a side loses the first match of a big series, it is often difficult for them to wrestle back the initiative and compete. This is certainly the case when a home team gets on a roll, suddenly the touring side finds being away from home difficult, alien conditions start to get to them etc.
Spend a lot of time on www.cricnfo.com and play around with their statsguru page. This is an entire library of all international cricket played over the years and can be the best encyclopedia for all things cricket. It can be a great guide for picking up cricket betting tips for free online.
Here is our recommended list of the best cricket stats websites available:
Due to an over-reactive market, cricket betting online gives the average punter a great chance to take big odds for something that just a few overs previous wasn't value at all. In a Test match, five days is a long time for a team to concentrate – a side so often goes from being in a solid position and being favourite to win, to suddenly having a batting collapse and being in danger of losing.
One main cricket betting strategy is to keep an eye when a side is due to take a new ball (after 80 overs) A new ball can offer a bowling attack a new opportunity to cause batsman problems as a new ball has a prouder, thicker seam, giving the ball a better chance to deviate. Be aware this can go against a side on a very flat pitch, against two set batsmen. The newer ball flies off the bat even quicker to the boundary with a newer ball than an old one! In a T20 or ODI keep an eye out for when a captain is forced to bowl his lesser bowlers – batsmen will often target this bowler in a pre-determined attack and as such runs could flow quickly, vastly changing the cricket betting odds live over the course of a matter of balls.
Keeping a record of your betting is crucial to being profitable in the long term. Only through keeping track of each of your bets can you see where you are going right, and in which situations you are showing poor discipline and making errors of judgement. To assist you with this, we've developed the bettingexpert Cricket betting spreadsheet. It's free and you can download it now.
It's easy to use. Simply enter the tournament, series or match you are betting on, the date, the bet description, your stake, the odds and the bookmaker you placed the bet with. Once the event has been completed, select either Win, Loss or Refund from the Result options and the spreadsheet will calculate your profit or loss plus your running profit/loss and your overall golf betting ROI.
A number of bookmakers offer the widest range of cricket markets for betting on cricket online in our opinion. They cover all the obvious leading markets that we mentioned above, plus offer some side markets that we like such as individual player performance points over/under markets. This is where a player is scored 1pt a run, 10pts a catch, 20pts a wicket or 25pts a stumping throughout the duration of a match. With some researching, this cricket betting tip can be a great way to win from a side market whilst always having a betting interest throughout the duration of a match.
Paddy Power seem to specialise in offering batsman match up bets; great if you fancy that a certain batsman is in form and is likely to outscore a teammate or an opponent during a certain match.
Skybet also deserve a mention for a growing list of pre-match cricket markets on offer. Although not as extensive as the above two, they offer good value for money, often offering the biggest odds for many outright winning market.
Here are six things to look for from in bookmaker for your cricket betting:
- Reputability – you work too hard to risk losing your money to an online scam artist or fly-by-night operation. Always use a bookmaker recommended by bettingexpert.com
- Odds – Market odds will vary from bookie to bookie, sometimes quite dramatically. If you are in the market for Test cricket odds, ODI odds or T20 betting odds, odds comparison websites can help you find the very best odds for your cricket bets.
- Cricket Betting Markets – Not all bookmakers cover the same cricket betting markets, and some cater more for cricket than others. Odds comparison sites list all of the available markets for cricket betting, and the bookies that are covering them
- In-Play Betting – While it will never replace betting on the overall outcome of matches or tournaments, its great fun, one can bet cricket live and the results can be highly profitable.
- Live Streaming Service – What began as a gimmick in now becoming an integral part of the whole online cricket betting experience. If you are on the go, working late at the office, traveling on a train, maybe even hiding out in your den while your partner is watching the soaps, you can watch the match on your device, laptop or PC and indulge in some in-play betting – bliss!
If you're wondering which bookmaker might best suit your golf betting needs and which offer the best welcome bonuses, refer to our detailed list of bookmaker reviews.
Always keep an eye on Skybet who often offer a price boost in the leading run scorer market in the hours leading up to a match. A price boost offers customers enhanced odds often well above the market average. This can be very useful if you fancy backing a favourite in the individual leading run scorer market but think his original price might have been a tad short.
Paddy Power quite often offer money back specials. During certain domestic competitions such as the Big Bash, Paddy will refund your leading run scorer bet if his mode of dismissal is clean bowled!
William Hill also offer enhanced odds for a number of cricket markets each week, including price boosts on a number of doubles markets. This includes bigger than normal odds on doubles prices for a certain side to win a match and a certain batsman to top score for that winning side.
To see a detailed list of all current free bet and bookmaker promotions available, please refer to our Bookmaker Free Bets page. Everything you need to know about free bets and bookmaker promotions.
Given the sheer volume of domestic T20 tournaments hosted around the world, it shouldn't be a surprise to hear that Ladbrokes has a large number of cricket live streaming matches broadcast throughout the year. Punters can watch cricket odds live alongside the match they are betting on, taking away the need to be in front of the television in order to build an accurate picture of matches as they unfold.
Read our guide to bookmaker live streams to learn more about this increasingly popular and useful feature.
Finding profitable cricket betting tips and cricket predictions can be difficult. While there may be hundreds of cricket tipsters on the internet making daily cricket betting predictions, it's hard to tell which tipsters are legitimate long term profitable cricket tipsters and which are not. At bettingexpert we believe in full transparency. On our cricket betting tips page, you can not only see the latest cricket betting tips but more importantly, each tipster's overall betting record. Want to only follow those tipsters that have shown the ability to find genuine cricket betting value, it's easy. You can rank our daily cricket tips by tipster rating and overall yield.
For the latest cricket betting tips and predictions, visit our cricket betting tips page. Or become a cricket tipster yourself and be in the running for monthly cash prizes, by signing up with bettingexpert today.